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Staymates, Gerskovic, Materese, Porter, Press and Wilson Receive Shorty Award for Face Covering Campaign

Purple background. Words on left: Best in Public Health. Shorty Social Good Awards. Two rows of b&w headshots, 3 people in each row.

1st row, L-to-R: Matt Staymates, Gail Porter, Riley Wilson. 2nd row, L-to-R: Robin Materese, Rich Press, Leon Gerskovic

Credit: B. Hayes/NIST

NIST's social media video featuring research engineer Matt Staymate’s visualizations of air flow and face coverings received a Shorty Award for Best in Public Health and was a finalist for Best in Government & Politics.

The high-speed visualizations illustrating airflow when breathing and coughing using home-made masks. Behind the scenes blog: https://www.nist.gov/blogs/taking-measure/my-stay-home-lab-shows-how-face-coverings-can-block-spread-disease. Text version of https://www.nist.gov/director/pao/cover-smart-do-your-part-slow-spread-video-transcript-including-description-visuals

The Shorty Awards honor the best content creators and producers in social media and this year, the organizers say they received more entries than ever.

The video received about 170,000 views via NIST’s social media platforms and website, plus an additional 6.3 million views thanks to NIH retweeting it after we reached out to them. Several elected officials and U.S. embassies also shared the video. Another 1.4 million views came through the PBS YouTube program “It’s Okay to Be Smart,” which included the video in one of its programs. The video was also featured on Good Morning America, Fox News, and many local news stations and was shown at the Orlando Science Center and the WonderLab Science Museum in Bloomington, Indiana.

In addition to our own English and Spanish versions of the video, it was translated by others and shared worldwide in French, Romanian, Portuguese and Hindi. The American Public Health Association has included the video in its COVID-19 resources page.

Read the blog post about the visualization and Matt's creation of his at-home lab.

Created December 2, 2020, Updated December 16, 2020